Some Mid-Week Fun

Wednesday is Regatta day – the sun was out but it was windy so a bit of a cooler day. Campers had a hearty breakfast and headed off to waterfront to join in the action in their teams. A round of water games and puzzles had the little ones wrapped in towels and big sweatshirts to warm them up. Freezies were still the choice for the morning treat!


After all the games were played and the teams won the elements to make their rafts, it was time for them to get building. The participants were all ready until…wait a moment…there is was intruder with a very deluxe raft. It was impossible that they had earned all those pieces. After a discussion with the head judge (Super Eagle) it was determined that they were entering for fun! After a roll over and second attempt to board the waterfront crafts, the participants were once again ready, the teams were lining the shore and also ready with their team cheer: on your mark, get set, go!


Amanda definitely took the lead with Lydia a solid second. As Amanda touched the finish line, Lesley went into full steam ahead mode as she has saved some energy for a sprint at the end. Lydia fell into third and Lesley took second place. A good race for the spectators!


After Regatta and a tasty lunch of tacos in a bag, we said goodbye to some happy Sparks and Brownies. They enjoyed a super three nights at Wa-Thik-Ane and we hope to see them back for a week next summer. They are all ready for it!

Late in the afternoon 3 campers challenged themselves to the Short Lake Swim and earned the crest — super swim campers.


Evening brought program for the Guides with the Maori stick game, some daytime astronomy and a peaceful view at the “Quiet Place” rock overlooking a calm Ranger Lake. I heard through the winds that the Guides have written some great stories to go with the constellations they created. Stay tuned to read those in tomorrow’s blog!


The Pathfinders on trail camp were sitting in the marquee planning and prepping for their overnight hike off-site. The volume was at a typical young teen level when one of the campers spotted a deer coming on site. I went to investigate and, sure enough, the two youngsters had come to listen in on the trail campers’ itinerary. Keep an eye out on the trails, campers, I think you might have some followers. By the way, your dehydrated dinner prep looks great. Bon appetite on the trail.


Super Eagle

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A Deep Love for Camp and Camp Life

Waterfront and program staff at Wa-Thik-Ane are so much more than lifeguards and boating specialists. They embrace the camp life and help out in so many more ways. They have been busy on an adventure reviving old camp signs they found and making the waterfront area look amazing and fun. A few nails and voila we have a sign that is interchangeable with a different message every day; today’s adventure is “Be Prepared.”


After hard work they deserved a little cooling off in the water and fun, so today they adventured out on the paddleboard for some yoga on the water!


The wind came up on the lake mid-afternoon which caused a small delay in the departure of the Blueberry Island Lifejacket Swim Challenge. A late departure meant a delayed return and closing of waterfront and then, after a quick change and fast dinner, they prepared and led an amazing campfire for the campers. Part of working and volunteering at WWWTA is a deep love for the camp and camp life!


Sparks and Brownies headed off for their camp tour and had a wonderful visit down the road pass Youngson campfire known today as central campfire all the way to Mic Mac (Mi’kmaq), my favourite campsite with a running creek and bridge over to Chippewa. On their way back up the trail, they stopped at Mohawk for a morning snack before heading back to waterfront for boating. It was a busy morning for little camper feet indeed.


Guides had a busy morning too. They went boating and with small numbers they pretty well have a 1:2 teaching ratio. They should make some awesome paddlers by the end of the camp week. They also did some compass and trail making signs with Coral, our program staff member. They used a compass to draw a planned shape following cardinal directions and then made their own for others to follow: Great skills to have!


Our trail campers were busy yesterday finishing up their walking sticks and enjoying the wood-burning tools to create unique designs. They also prepped their food for dehydration. We will be able to have a sneak peek of their trail meal tomorrow if all goes well with the dehydrating. It’s easy to put a tent, you say? Well, Coral can make it a challenge with oven mitts and blindfolds. They are definitely all set for pitching the tents on the trail later this week.


From the rays of sunshine as we paddle the lake to the sun lowering to the evening sky on the water, it was another beautiful day at Camp Wa-Thik-Ane (Wa’kan ne:kaien).



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Valois-Dorval Pathfinders: Go East Trip

We took what has become an annual unit road trip. This year’s goal was to explore the local communities of the Eastern Townships. Our unit had selected key sites and each day was coordinated by one of our third-year girls. She was navigator, chief cook, liaison with our contractors and overall decision maker. The girls had prepped, planned and managed the daily truck packing like pros.

– Heather Martin

Here is our girls’ summary of the trip:

A Series of Fortunate Events


Granby Zoo (by Melissa, Meaghan, Emilie, Sybil with Cynthia)

We began our trip with a visit to the Granby zoo! The morning was hot and fresh with excitement as our group set foot in the zoo and began our first of many adventures planned for the week. From the Asiatic black bears and red pandas of Asia to the majestic leopard who calls South America home, our day was filled with exciting discoveries and interesting animals from all over the world at our fingertips. Once we’d visited the animals and made quick work of our tacos in a bag, we headed to the water park to cool off and escape the warm rays of the sun. We glided down the Lazy River on tubes all while avoiding the watery traps set up for extra fun among friends. Next, a few of us set off to conquer the water slides that stood taunting us at the same time the others dared to tame the mighty wave pools, all having a good laugh as they got caught up in the powerful waves crashing down upon them. Unfortunately, every good day must come to an end and as such our visit to the zoo drew to a close but the memories and photos we captured will surely stay with us for a very long time.


After a night at Yamaska Park, we hit the road heading into Sherbrooke to the Museum of Science and Nature. We experienced the evolution of the area through earthquakes, the Ice Age, and the power of rain to erode the rocks and create the rivers and gorges popular in this area, all in 4D. The other exhibits helped us learn about Inuit technology through interactive exhibits including a virtual reality dog sled ride, information on the changing environment of the land in Quebec and an exhibit of real animals (stuffed by taxidermists) to understand more about them. After a visit to some of the historic murals nearby and a walk past a power dam to see the Magog River Gorge, we settled at a park for a picnic.


The next step was to head to Coaticook where we HAD to stop for ice cream.


Then we played a round of Glo Golf and, after dinner, headed off in the dark to enjoy the Foreta Illumina and watch the fairies help vanquish the enemies so the valley could live in harmony.



Capelton Mines & Uplands Cultural Centre (by Reaghan, Katrina, Hannah & Amy with Elaine)

When we went to the Capelton Mine we discovered that the weather really influenced the work in the area. In the Capelton mine the only light source was a candle they attached to their hat.


The workers used a “fleuret” and a hammer to make holes for the black powder that exploded the rock and gave us the Calpopirate. One hole could take up to 4 hours to create, which means they could only make 3 holes daily. They would keep mules underground to pull up to 4 tones of Calcopirate. Before they brought the mules down, they would not feed them for 3 days so that they would not get sick. They would keep the mules there until they were dead or could not work anymore because of loss of strength. If they were ever brought back up, they would be blind because they were used to the darkness in the tunnels. The miners put wooden pillars in the mine and every morning a miner was sent to hit each pillar with a hammer to check if it was safe. If there was an echo, it would mean that it was safe. If there was no echo, it would mean that there was pressure on the pillar and the mine could collapse at any moment. The miners also used rats to check the safety of the mine. Each miner would have two rats that could sense the vibrations of the rocks 24 hours before humans could. So if the miners saw a stampede of rats running to the exit, they knew that their safety was compromised. Because they only had a candle for light, the fire almost always went out when running out of the mine and everything went pitch black. Luckily, because of how long they had worked at the mine, they knew the paths by heart. The miners would start working at the age of 14. Usually, their first job would be disposing of the workers waste. At this mine, it was considered bad luck if there was a female present, which means all the workers were male. Eustis Mine was closed much later in history. So they had access to more modern technologies, such as dynamite. Tourists are not able to visit Eustis, because of the unstable structures. The miners were paid by the amount of Cacopirate they recuperated every day. The average pay was 1,10$ per day. In those days 1,10$ was a lot of money, but Capelton money was only usable in Capelton. They could exchange it against Canadian money, but for a lot less. They would usually exchange their money so that they could buy alcohol from a village they called Whisky-ville. They could not get alcohol in Capelton because the town had banned it so that miners did not come to work drunk, which could cause danger to many lives. In conclusion, this mine was very interactive and interesting because they still had some of the former equipment. For example, they still have the stables for mules and even some lounge chairs that were built with two pieces of wood. These chairs were used during their lunch break.

Uplands Cultural Centre (Emma, Giada, Ariel, Zoe with Heather)

Abridged Version by Emma

We had some tea,

it was not free,

at the end we all had to pee.


Full Version by the group

We went to Uplands Cultural Center,

we walked through the gates to enter.

We sat in the sun, that was not quite fun,

But the umbrellas made our day brighter.

We got plates of food

brought by a young dude,

the food was yummy,

sandwiches, tea and sweats filled our tummy

we did not leave any lighter.

We went to visit the house,

we were as quiet as a mouse.

We saw bedrooms, teacups and artwork galore,

there were toys and history spread out on two floors,

but the one toilet made us wish we had diapers.

We recommended this place, it will give you a happy face.

Enjoy tea with your friends and the fun never ends

Our day ended after a beautiful drive through the rolling hills at Mont Megantic Park.


Town of Lac Megantic & Astrolab at Mont Megantic SEPAQ Park. (By Giada, Emma, Ariel, Zoe with Heather)

We were really tired, we thought we were gonna die…it was day 4. To start off the day we went to the town of Lac Megantic to learn about the tragedy that happened in 2013. While we were there, we saw a bunch of structures to represent the people that sadly died during the train crash. We used the Balado App to do a self-guided tour. For lunch, we enjoyed pizza from Pizzeria Megantic by the shores of lac Megantic. After lunch, we retreated to the beach for a nice splash in the water. The water was chilly, yet refreshing. At the beach, we shared some laughs watching our group play in the bouncy houses that were set up. We went to rustic cabins with no running water or electricity, but we made it! For supper, we had fire-grilled pork chops, rice and veggies. Once we ate and we were all cleaned up, we made our way through the forest to get to the Astrolab presentations. The hike to the astrolabe was a kilometre long, we were happy to see those chairs! The presentation was spot on; we learned a lot about space and moon landings because it is the 50th anniversary of the first moon landing. To get to the observatory we shuffled into a big yellow bus. At the observatory we took our seats to watch another presentation. Though some of us slept through it (by accident) it was educational. For the second half of the presentation we walked to the second observatory where we were going to see stars through a HUGE telescope. The weather was crazy — according to a weather forecast, the wind was strong enough to move small vehicles and trees. Because of the weather, we were not able to see the stars through the telescope but we could look at previously taken pictures. The sound of the wind we heard through the observatory was ferocious. Since the wind was so strong and there was lighting the bus driver was nice enough to drop us off right next to our campsite instead of making us walk the one kilometre because it was so dangerous.

Even though some of us fell asleep because we were so tired it was all worth it. At the end of the day, we fell asleep right away as our heads hit the pillow. I guess we didn’t die .


For the first part of the day we drove to the top of the mountain but we were in the clouds… it was still cool. We then drove to an important stop: A gas station (and depanneur ) where everyone filled up.

At our next stop, we discovered open pit mining, how the lift operator couldn’t see the elevator and the impact the mine had on the town, both when it was open and now that it is closed. We met Elizabeth, a local Guider, Jessie, our tour guide and ex-pathfinder, and Paolo, who had actually worked in the mine and learned about life in the town. We learned that meeting someone local definitely helps find good ice cream and the best routes out of town in rush hour.

Aquarium of Quebec – Sleeping Under the Fish? (By Paisley, Kaitlin, Alejandra Gwen with Anne)


Here we are at the aquarium, not knowing what we are getting ourselves into. After our warm welcome from Arianne and Laurence, they offered to take some of our bags to where we would be sleeping, in the fish tunnel. Not long after that, we got a VIP tour of the different enclosures. Shortly after our tour, we gathered to watch a movie. The popcorn and drinks provided were very scrumptious. Once the movie was over we headed to bed with our friends, the fish. While we were setting up our beds, we got to admire the under water life of many different creatures. Laying down to look up and seeing the different fish such as the leopard sharks, the starfish, the sunfish and many more fish swimming around us was very fascinating. Not long after that, the lights dimmed out for us all to sleep but little did we know, the fish had more energy once the lights were off. We could see the shadows of the fish moving around us, having the time of their lives. Early the next morning, we woke up to a healthy breakfast prepared for us which consisted of delicious pastries, a variety of beverages and a selection of fruit. It was quite yummy. Once we were all packed and ready for the day, we got a behind the scenes tour and we got to participate in the feeding of the leopard sharks and the octopus. Lucky for us we were able to then touch the octopus with the aquarist Marco. To finalize our adventure at the aquarium, we dispersed into small interest groups to explore unknown territories of the aquarium. While exploring, we got to pet the sting rays, watch the seal presentation and visit the gift shop, of course. Overall, our time spent at the aquarium was quite the experience and would be highly recommended as a Girl Guide activity for all ages.


Our trip wrapped up with a poutine lunch stop and a discussion about where our travels will take us next year!!

Special thanks to Janet and Esther for helping with campsite supervision, Mrs. Martin for instructions in proper tea etiquette and Elizabeth for helping make arrangements in Thetford Mines.

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Cheese and Fire…YUM!

The weather gods certainly have blessed us: the days are sunny and warm and the nights are cooling off for a great sleep.


Boating was busy yesterday with dry dock on day 1. The campers lined up and learn the different strokes as they sat on the sides of the boating dock. They were also able to get their swim time in and the boat swim was small in numbers but a great success for all those who participated.


Brownies and Guides made their own grilled cheese on buddy burners for lunch yesterday (a large tin can placed over a small tin can filled with cardboard and wax that acts as a burner) while the Pathfinder trail campers melted wax and made burlap bags to cook theirs in.



The Pathfinders have been busy learning new skills to cook on the trail and making walking sticks and all kinds of cool things. We have two awesome volunteers with lots of skills to share with these girls on site. They are lucky campers! Trail camp will definitely be a returning camp, maybe even over two weeks of smaller one week groups next year!



Super Eagle

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A Busy Weekend at Camp!

Wow, high heat and humidity along with two camps moving in and out made for a tired Super Eagle and late blog post. Good thing there is a lake for the eagle to dip her wings in!

Friday brought the end of a busy week for Brownies as they wrapped up a week of fun in the sun and STEM! They experienced weather-related science and we even had young engineers hard at work. Of course there is always time for a little lounging, some great dragonfly crafts and a good campfire. All of this added up to some happy campers now resting up at home.




The Pathfinders practised building shelters with our program staff member, Coral. I was lucky enough to arrive for a visit just in time. Just as the shelters were ready, a rain storm appeared in the sky: high clouds moved in above the shelter, it began to shower and them a big downpour as the bucket clouds emptied. I am not sure who enjoyed it more? 😎 🦅

The weekend brought 16 Moms and 17 kids to camp for Wee Camp. It was a great bunch of campers and some fantastic leaders. The weather cooperated by having the thunderstorms scoot by us to the south so everyone was able to enjoy boating and swimming. Sunday brought the camp to a close with some water games and a picnic lunch outside Stavert lodge.



As we said hello to the new campers coming in for week 3, we waved goodbye to the tired Sparks and their moms. It is sure to be a quiet ride home with the little ones!

Super Eagle

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A Road Trip to the National Trefoil Gathering in Sudbury

Our day started 7am when Margaret and Beryl arrived at the house. We packed the Ford Fusion that I had rented and then we were off to pick up Corry. The stop for lunch was more fun for the little black flies than it was for us, so we popped back into the car and ate there.

We got to Laurentian University in Sudbury at 3:30pm, unloaded the car, registered and moved our luggage up to the fourth-floor dormitory. The Residence was set up with four bedrooms, two at one side with a bathroom at the end and the same on the other side. There was a large common room with kitchen facilities and a sitting area in the middle. This setting was very nice and very comfortable.

Supper was in the cafeteria. The walk was a little long for some of the elderly ladies but after sitting for 8 hours we enjoyed the walk. Later, Corry and I walked over to the auditorium with our tablecloth/banner.  Busses were provided if you wanted.

At the opening ceremonies, Barb Nott, the Committee Chair, welcomed us all and there were greetings from Judy Pavlis who introduced the special guests from the UK, the USA and Australia. She also introduced the Service Project that was launched for the Sudbury Children’s Hospital. We were then entertained by the Young Sudbury Singers.

After the long day of travel we popped into the hospitality room where they had a singalong and we had a chance to reacquaint ourselves with other Guiding friends. We did not stay long and went up to our rooms knowing that a full day ahead was waiting for us.


On Thursday morning, we all went off to our different sessions. Beryl went to the Planetarium – it was very very interesting and she learned a lot about our universe and the stars. She also attended a session on rocks where they made an Inuksuk  (the stone messenger ee-nuk-shuck). She plans to teach her great nieces and nephews this summer.

Margaret learned about and tried out geocaching and also did paddle painting.  The trainer was Cissy Bourget’s daughter. Small world!  Margaret and Corry both had a session leader that spoke about some of the highlights of Sudbury.  Corry did some tile coaster art. I choose to go to Fashion Through Time and learned why and when forks and knives as well as many other everyday items were dreamed up and put in place.  My afternoon was filled with belly dancing and meditation from the girl who I did Yoga wih in the morning. After this fun fun-filled day we relaxed for a while in the hospitality room where they had a campfire.


On Friday morning after breakfast, we all picked up our box lunches and headed off to our chosen out-trips. Beryl went to tour Sudbury and the surrounding area.  She went to a farm museum, an old railroad museum and the Heritage Centre and on a walking tour of Copper-cliff.  This was very interesting as they saw some history of the locations.

Margaret took an outing to an old railway station which is now a museum with information on the trains and old shops in Sudbury, then on a short boat trip across the lake, rode the Carousels and went on a miniature train ride (the cars were rather small!) and saw the house where the Dionne Quints were born.  Margaret met their nephew.  All quite interesting!

Corry took a day trip, where she painted at the same place as one of the Group of Seven did his painting at Onaping Falls many years ago.


I took a museum stroll in downtown Sudbury with the same session leader with whom I did the belly dancing. It was quite interesting to see the local artwork.  At the end of our tour, we went to an art studio and each made a piece of art or jewellery. That evening Beryl, Corry, Margaret and I went back to our dorm and compared our days with each other.

Saturday after breakfast, busses were offered to those who wanted but Corry and I choose to walk to the Fraser Auditorium for the plenary session. This was when each provincial advisor went up on stage to play Family Feud.

After lunch, the Liaisons had a short meeting where we discussed having a common National Trefoil brochure.


That evening was the Banquet, filled with lots of good food and great company.  There were delegates from Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Sudbury’s Mayor Al Sizer welcomed all of us and then the provincial presentations were shown throughout the dinner. Afterwards, Kristen Brutto, a local singer, entertained us.


After breakfast the next morning, Beryl, Corry, Margaret and I walked over to the Fraser Auditorium for the closing. There, we saw a picture show of the week’s events and reported back on the service project results.


An auction of aprons that were worn by the committee earned over $700 for the CWFF. The next province hosting the National Trefoil Gathering (Winnipeg, Manitoba) was announced and Judy and Barb passed on the banner and the lantern.

After the closing, it was time to settle in for our long drive home. We decided to find a place to eat lunch. I spotted a small park along the roadside with picnic tables and it was perfect: there was a nice breeze and we spotted a gas station where we could take a break if we wanted to. Back home, we all stumbled out of the car with our legs a bit shaky and stiff but we were safe and sound.

Blog post by Ellen Gauthier, Provincial Trefoil Liaison for Québec. The Trefoil Guild is a membership activity for women over 30. Often Trefoil Guild members have been members of Guiding in a variety of roles for many years, and join the Trefoil Guild to keep in touch with the organization and each other. To become a Trefoil Guild member, please reach out to

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Camp WTA has a ‘quiet spot’? Shhhhh

Thursday July 18th

As we near the end of the week the day gets busier with campers completing challenges. Guides slept under the stars last night and were very excited to have completed their challenge crest. There were a few who amazed me as they took on the challenge and completed it – way to go campers!

Morning brought a paddle to Blueberry Island for the Guides with the opportunity to swim at the island, a favourite for returning campers. We even had an extra camper come with us; “Bunny” and he was able to have the safest ride possible, strapped to our senior boating specialist. Thank you Pip for letting Bunny join us.



Brownies were busy swimming, boating and hiking all around camp. While coming up from swim the Brownie campers were able to have a good long look at some of our camp residents.


They are new to our family this Spring and are very relaxed at camp life. They completed their “Camp Tour” crest by visiting all the campsites at Wa-Thik-Ane. A special stop was made at the “Quiet Place” which is a beautiful spot overlooking Ranger Lake; the perfect spot to have a break and collect one’s thoughts. Shhhhsh don’t pass on the info that it is Super Eagles’ hiding spot. They will be ready for a good sleep tonight.

Afternoon brought calm waters and the opportunity for Guide and Pathfinder campers to complete the Short Lake Swim. About 15 or so swimmers entered the water and had a great swim. It is not a race, but a personal challenge and one young camper was determined to make it hers. She swam a steady slow pace to complete a crest that took all of her concentration and physical energy. The last stretch is the shortest with the dock in close reach but also the hardest as one wonders if they have anything left with their legs that feel so heavy. I reached out to hold my hand up for that high 5 as the campers on deck cheered her on to the finish line. Well done and a great selfie with Super Eagle for the happy camper.


Evening brought central campfire where we all joined together for some familiar songs around the fire. This is one of my favourite events at summer camp.

Super Eagle

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